Essay by btrfly0803High School, 12th gradeA+, August 2004

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On April 23, 1564, a man was born. This was a man who would make an impact on theatre, literature, and society as a whole for years to come. William Shakespeare, son of John Shakespeare and Mary Arden, lived a childhood that is still fairly unknown to most biographers. However, it is his time spent writing that is most important to us today. "Young Will was not an immediate and universal success" (Little, screen 2). Records of Shakespeare as a young playwright comes from his rival, Robert Greene. According to his records, Shakespeare was an arrogant man... "[who] supposes he is as well able to bombast out a blank verse as the best of you" (Little, screen 2).

Although writing plays and acting in them was not such an upper-class profession at this time, a writer like Shakespeare was still well respected. Even the king of England, King James I, who reigned during the peak of Shakespeare's career, admired the playwright.

In the summer of 1606, King James I needed entertainment for a special visitor, the King of Denmark. He called on Shakespeare to write him a play for the occasion. Shakespeare's company, his acting troupe, were called the King's Players, and were accustomed to such commands from the king. This command, the creation that came from Shakespeare's hand, was the popular tragedy Macbeth. (Little, screen 3).

This play, although drawn from historical facts from Raphael Holinshed's Chronicles of England, Scotland, and Ireland (Little, screen 3) was still considered a history, not a tragedy. This is because Shakespeare added his own little twists to the facts, making the story more interesting for an audience. Another reason why this play is considered a tragedy and not a history is because it deals with universal concepts. These concepts include guilt,